Francine In Retirement
Seeing Life Through Photography


Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

Log cabins are small, one-room houses built of logs notched at the ends and laid one upon another with the spaces filled with plaster, moss, mortar, mud, or dried manure. In North America they were built by early settlers, hunters, loggers, and other wilderness dwellers. They have also been built in Europe, particularly Scandinavia. Though designs vary, a common style features a sloping, single-gabled timbered roof and small windows.

Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

The buildings at Spruce Forest are authentic, original log cabins and other rustic structures that have been lovingly restored with expert craftsmanship, serving as studios for artisans such as a potter, blacksmith, weaver, soap maker, teddy bear artist and herb specialist, stained glass artists, basket weaver and spinner, slate painter and bird sculptor.

Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

Volunteers share storytelling duties in the 1835 Miller House and the 1825 Compton School. Other buildings include the Village Church (1903), Bear Hill School (1913), Schrock Cabin (1930), Eli Miller Shed (1889), Winterberg House (1820 and a former stagecoach stop along the Old National Road, of which we are located along), Glotfelty House (1776), Markley House (1775), Red Shed, Village Office (1991), Stanton’s Mill (1797 and waiting for funds and donations to enable massive restoration).

Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

Log cabin or log house, style of home typical of the American pioneer on the Western frontier of the United States in the great westward expansion after 1765. It was constructed with few tools, usually an axe or an adz and an auger. All the fastenings were of wood. The log walls were chinked with mud to make them reasonably impervious to the wind.

Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

There was no glass, and greased paper might be used across window openings to let some light through. The shutters and doors were fastened on with wooden pegs. There was usually only one door. When the ridge pole of the roof was put in place, roughly hewn flat slabs were laid for a roof. Frequently there was no floor; if there was, it was usually of puncheons, logs split in half, placed with the flat sides up. The furniture was very often roughly made with the same tools that were used in making the house.

Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

All were of crude but efficient workmanship. In settlements where Native American attacks were feared the log houses were sometimes placed to form a protected rectangle. The blockhouse on the Western frontier was often made of logs. Log cabins were frequently built by community enterprise, a “house-raising” being an occasion for entertainment as well as work.

Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

Log Cabin in Spruce Forest

The Crossing

The entire complex is nestled amidst much 18th and 19th century history, as George Washington as a general in the Army coordinated efforts to build this first national road in this great country.  The stone arch bridge is known as The Crossing located on the Old National Road.

I hope you enjoyed my photos of log cabins in Spruce Forest as seen through the lens of my camera.  Future post on the blockhouse will come later.

Thank you for stopping by and reading this post.  I hope you have a great day.




  1. Yes, I HAVE enjoyed your photos of log cabins via the lens of your camera. Would love to visit!

    • Thank you so much. The log cabins are located in Spruce Forest 177 Casselman Rd
      Grantsville, Maryland 21536 They are open free to the public and each cabin has a different craftman.

  2. Francine, this is one of the best yet I guess because the log cabins are an interest of mine. I have a friend in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley that has one that is similar to the second picture and what a deal he got. He had it removed from a piece of land, moved it piece by piece, at no cost other than back-filling the old house site (filling in the basement). In his area, near Harrisonburg, VA, most of the cabins were built by Scots-Irish and Germans that came down the valley from Pennsylvania. There is a large Mennonite population where he lives and he hired them to put it back up (too bad that was not free, lol). They marked each and every piece, moved it, and rebuilt on his land and the craftsmenship is out of this world. There’s a little spruce in the area but also a lot of Eastern Hemlock. There is a tranquility when I am around those delicate evergreen trees that is like no other. Not to sound “new age” or something but they almost speak to me in a sense. Thanks so much – this is one GREAT POST!

    • I am so glad you enjoyed this post. It has always been my desire that those who read my posts or view my photos are encouraged or inspired. I am encouraged and appreciate your comment.


  3. Such great craftsmanship that stands the test of time. I also love the bridge, its like many here in England, have you posted a photo of it before?

  4. The cabins are wonderful, Francine and the stone bridge, too. Thanks for taking me there.

  5. Now that was something different! Very cozy looking cabins.

  6. Wonderful photos, Francine. Those cabins look very habitable, at least for a holiday.:)

  7. very interesting post francine, i wonder how the inside of these old cabins look like..

  8. These are beautiful…Thanks darrell

  9. I love log cabins! Great shots, Francine!
    God Bless You!

  10. Oh how I’d Love to have a cabin like one of these… Maby when I get to heaven HUH! .. Blessings… Bro Pat 🙂

  11. It’s wonderful to see the results of the true labor of love that was devoted to this restoration project. Your photographs are fabulous!

  12. Thanks, Francine, for this post. I find log cabins fascinating, as well as the people who built them. Such a hard life they chose for themselves. I wonder what they might think if they saw our country today.

  13. I love these! I long for a log cabin at the sea!

  14. These are really lovely Francine! Thanks for sharing.

  15. Marvellous this is an Artisan Village now – what a place for show casing their talents. Hope they get the funds for that big restoration of Stantons Mill .

  16. I LOVE log cabins but these are spectacular….what a beautiful place in the world this is

  17. Loved seeing the photos. However, they did make me a little homesick. Not that I ever lived in one, but they remind me of home and our heritage.

  18. Grew up on stories of American log cabins! They seem wonderfully preserved. Thanks for sharing Francine 🙂

  19. Wonderful photographs.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

  20. Thank you David! Have a blessed day.

  21. Love the images Francine! May your new year be so very spiritually prosperous and abundantly blessed!

  22. They are awesome photos. Wonderful preservation of some lovely preservations.

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